May 7, 2018/Press Releases

Republican Gubernatorial Candidates Won’t Stand Up for Health Care

Hartford, CT – Last year, when Republicans tried to repeal the Affordable Care Act, Governors from both parties called on Congress to keep the law intact.  Repealing the ACA would have been disastrous for Connecticut, threatening the state financially and threatening the 724,000 Connecticut residents who gained insurance from the ACA.

While Republicans in Congress debated enacting a plan that would devastate Connecticut, Republican candidates for Governor were capitulating to national Republicans–not standing up for Connecticut.

  • Mark Boughton said he would wait to see how Ohio handled it.
  • Tim Herbst took the opportunity to attack Medicaid, citing a statistic from Fox news that states with the higher Medicaid enrollment also had higher instances of opioid abuse.  Medicaid helps those suffering with an opioid addiction access treatment and there’s no evidence to support the claim that expanding Medicaid drives the opioid crisis.
  • Mark Lauretti also had no comment on the repeal, but in 2013 he cut back city employee’s hours to avoid paying for their health care.
  • Peter Lumaj was also silent on this issue, but ran for U.S. Senate on repealing the Affordable Care Act in 2011.
  • Mike Handler, Steve Obsitnik, Bob Stefanwoski, Erin Stewart, David Stemerman, and Dave Walker made no comment, failing to stand up to leaders in their own party on behalf of Connecticut.

Make no mistake, each one of these candidates had the opportunity to weigh in. This was a deliberate choice that they made as Republicans, as candidates, as Connecticut residents, and as neighbors to those that would be impacted. They use social media, speak to reporters, and hold public events–the failure to address this fundamental issue a complete and abject failure of these candidates to stand up, lead, and fight for Connecticut families. They must be held accountable.

“Republicans keep putting forward empty promises, and their stances on health care are no exception,” said Democratic State Party Chair Nick Balletto. “For all their promises to stand up for Connecticut, when the time came to stand up to their own party on an issue that would cost the state, they remained silent. Republicans have had every opportunity to prove that they will stand up to Trump and the national Republican Party, and they have failed every single time. Connecticut needs a leader who would use their voice and their office to stand up for Connecticut. Republican gubernatorial candidates have already shown us they’re unwilling to do that.”